- Our Town
Councils wary of new committee
A Shuswap-based workgroup being proposed by Community Futures received a lukewarm reception from two desired participants.
Community Futures Shuswap has invited the City of Salmon Arm, the District of Sicamous, Shuswap Tourism, Salmon Arm’s Economic Development Society (EDS) and others to form an inter-organizational committee that would work to develop economic/tourism opportunities in the region.
Community Futures executive director told Salmon Arm council her board was asked by Salmon Arm’s downtown improvement association to take the lead on this initiative, noting her organization is not just about lending money and supporting business.
“One of our primary focuses is community economic development, and that’s why we were asked to assume the lead on this,” said Mason.
Despite suggesting the job might be suited to the EDS, Cannon agreed to take part in the committee. Coun. Alan Harrison was supportive of this, as long as it didn’t cost the city any money. Meanwhile, Couns. Marg Kentel and Chad Eliason suggested the committee might be redundant with mandates of existing local government agencies.
“If Coun. Cannon thinks this is a good expenditure for her time, I’m happy to have her go and work on it… but I’m not willing to spend any money on this and I’d be hesitant to allocate a ton of staff time to it,” said Eliason.
Sicamous council wound up deferring discussion of Community Futures’ proposal until more information is received. This was after district chief administrative officer Heidi Frank said Mason wanted her to sit on the committee, meaning staff time, and after Frank and Coun. Busch suggested similar work is already being done through the Shuswap Lake Integrated Planning Process and the Thompson Okanagan Tourist Association.
“I totally agree with you, Coun. Busch, on this, because we have a lot of these programs and groups working all on the same initiatives,” said Sicamous Mayor Darrell Trouton. “And there’s different levels, it seems. What do you support, what don’t you support… and how much time and money do we spend of the taxpayers?”